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Mountain Valley Pipeline opponent arrested following protest in Giles County

Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 6:38 PM EDT
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NEWPORT, Va. (WDBJ) - Construction has resumed along a rugged stretch of the Mountain Valley Pipeline right-of-way in Giles County. Early Tuesday, an opponent of the project locked herself to a piece of construction equipment there.

Virginia State Police responded to the area shortly after 7:00 a.m. They said 27-year-old Alice Elliott of Ypsilanti, Michigan had attached herself to a piece of crane hoist equipment. State Police said she was about 25 feet off the ground and locked herself to the equipment when troopers approached.

At the same time, other pipeline opponents gathered in solidarity along Route 42 near Newport.

Karolyn Givens showed us where the pipeline crosses property she and her late husband began farming in the early ’80s.

“It’s a wonderful community. It’s an absolutely beautiful area,” Givens told WDBJ7. “They should not be running 42-inch pipe with 1400 psi fracked gas up and down these steep mountainsides.”

Joe & Donna Pitt agreed.

“Preserve Giles County has fought tooth and nail to do whatever we can to slow it down, until it is unfeasible,” Donna Pitt told us. “That’s our goal: delay, delay, delay.”

A specially-trained State Police team was called in to remove Elliott, and she was safely lowered to the ground.

She now faces four charges, including unauthorized use of a non-vehicle, obstructing justice, interference with the property rights of another and destruction/damage to a vehicle.

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